The class begins and all the participants settle into the lotus pose without any effort, but you feel that if you push a little more, you will break since the movement of your joints is limited. Thus, it could not be easy to relax. The fact that you are not able to do the most basic poses could get you down. Yet, yoga is about patience and constancy, which means you will eventually achieve to make that pose, that had even given you nightmares, effortlessly. All of it with help of the experience and the mental stability and control that it comes with it. So, if your flexibility is conspicuous by its absence, then the following information may interest you.

What is the reason I cannot sit cross-legged?

The truth is that it is no problem, each person is different. Beginning from our habits during childhood, when we adopt different postures in which some choose to sit cross-legged and others in W (the rear resting on the ground and the legs rotated outwards, one on each side). The latter being harmful to both the back and the hip.

Instead, individual physiology and routines acquired during childhood are only a little piece of the puzzle as maintaining a sedentary lifestyle is. 

Nevertheless, the lack of flexibility and muscle aches are almost due to individual habits and lifestyle. For example, if you spend a lot of time sitting on a chair, your joints will not be able to rotate as much as they should, setting a limit to their movement. This could have sounded bad, however, it is also the best part as muscle tension could be reversed with some stretching and more physical activity. 

What are the suggested exercises for adapting to the lotus flower pose?

The main action you should take is reducing the time you spend sitting. For that reason, the best option is to getting up from the chair and walk a total average of 20 to 30 minutes, also changing frequently the posture you are sitting. In addition, one of the best postures to stretch the hip joints is the butterfly. This posture consists of joining the soles of the feet with the knees extended out, simulating the wings of a butterfly. If you can, lean forward for further stretching.  

If you still find it difficult, make the adaptations that suit you

When you are performing the lotus flower pose, the hip is supposed to be higher than the knees. If this bothers you, try placing a block, or a cushion, under your buttock bones.

If you still don’t feel at ease, remove this posture from your routine.

Don’t force yourself if you can’t regain flexibility with the tips above. Not all postures are for everyone and, yoga is a practice to de-stress.

Do not get frustrated nor embarrassed if you do not follow the class to the letter since each person has their adaptations to relax and take advantage of yoga. 

As a curious fact, we have the so-called “Easy Posture” (Sukhasana) for any posture with crossed legs. The adjective “easy” refers to any way you can sit comfortably and enjoy yoga. Remember that yoga is a practice that everyone can perform and in which everyone uses the necessary adaptations for their enjoyment.

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